Grammar: Adverbs

Grammar: Adverbs

Understanding Spanish Adverbs

  • Adverbs in Spanish are words that modify a verb, an adjective, or even another adverb. They clarify how, where, when, how much, or how often something happens.

Forming Basic Adverbs

  • Many Spanish adverbs are formed by adding ‘-mente’ to the feminine singular form of the adjective. For example, the adverb “rápidamente” (quickly) is formed from the adjective “rápida” (quick).
  • If an adjective ends in “-e” or a consonant, you add “-mente” to the end to form the adverb. For example, “feliz” becomes “felizmente” (happily).
  • To use two or more adverbs ending in ‘-mente’ in a row, you only add ‘-mente’ to the final one: “rápida y fácilmente”.
  • Some adverbs are irregular, meaning they do not follow the typical “-mente” pattern. For example, “bien” (well), “mal” (badly), “muy” (very), “poco” (a little).

Types of Spanish Adverbs

  • Spanish adverbs of time include “ayer” (yesterday), “hoy” (today), “mañana” (tomorrow), and “siempre” (always).
  • Spanish adverbs of place include “aquí” (here), “allí” (there), “cerca” (near), “lejos” (far), “arriba” (above), “abajo” (below).
  • Spanish also has interrogative adverbs, used to ask questions. These include “¿dónde?” (where?), “¿cuándo?” (when?), “¿cómo?” (how?), and “¿por qué?” (why?).

Positioning and Usage of Adverbs

  • Remember the position of the adverb in a sentence. In general, adverbs in Spanish are placed close to the verb they modify, often directly after it. For instance, “Ella canta hermosamente” (She sings beautifully).
  • To negate a statement in Spanish, “no” is placed before the verb. For example, “Yo no hablo” (I do not speak).
  • Comparisons using adverbs are formed using “más…que” (more… than) to indicate greater degree, or “menos…que” (less… than) to indicate lesser degree, e.g., “Ella canta más hermosamente que Maria” (She sings more beautifully than Maria).

Final Note

  • Lastly, double-check your use of adverbs for agreement, position, and potential irregularities, and practise forming and using Spanish adverbs regularly.